Option to choose between Different licenses

Discussion started by BkkNeon

When I search for models to use commercially I Exclude editorial licenses.

But most of the models that appear when exluding editorial are branded models, or trademarked models.

It would be nice to have a option to choose Models that are available for commercial use without doing hours of research if the actual model isnt a rip off from somewhere.

In here i search for cars that I can use commercially https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models?keywords=car&licenses%5B%5D=exclude_editorial

First result is a https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/car/luxury/mercedes-benz-s-class-amg-sports-c217-coupe-hq-interior-2014 Mercedes Benz with a Royalty free License

but obviously without getting permission from mercedes itself I can't use them commercially.


Posted 7 months ago

Well that depends on the intended use. If its for a client then you can put the responsibility on them.

For example:
Client - I want a 'trademark' item in the render.
You - this item is trademarked, by asking for this item you agree to take full responsibility for any infringements/costs related in doing so.

This is a contract, keep this email handy for later.

Posted 7 months ago

The editorial license is an aberration in itself and SHOULD NOT EXIST, it is not the same to distribute a render of a model with copyright, than to sell the model, which allows making massive copies (counterfeits) of the object. But since it is allowed, all models that use trademarks or are copies of proprietary models must be labeled with the editorial license. And in addition, all models with editorial license should be distributed free of charge, because the truth is, that the seller (and CGTrader), are making a profit by selling something they do not own. And that is not allowed by law and is therefore illegal. As stated, it seems that the law does not affect sellers, but sellers are not above the law, they must also comply with it. Any contract that involves something that you do not own is totally void and the sole responsible is the seller. Just because almost everyone does it doesn't make it legal and nothing has ever happened, doesn't mean it can't happen.

There are many other cases that it is impossible to detect them before buying the model. And many buyers are scammed because they think they are buying a legitimate model, but in reality it is a stolen model, such as the hundreds of DAZ models sold here, or the models with copyrighted textures ... Buyers may be compromised your project for it, in addition to wasting your time and money. A serious market should take care of these things, but this is not the case.

3DCargo wrote
Editorial license is completely legal as long as its used correctly, this goes for all stock markets such as photography/video etc. " Editorial Usage Content published with the Editorial label may only be used in an editorial manner, relating to events that are newsworthy or of public interest, and may not be used for any commercial, promotional, advertising or merchandising use. However, in certain very limited instances, you may otherwise have the rights to IP in content that is labeled Editorial. For instance, you may be the advertising agency for a brand/IP owner or you may be the brand/IP owner itself purchasing content. If that is the case, you may use the Editorial content commercially, assuming you have the rights clearance through other means. But, you must have all the intellectual property rights necessary from the IP in the content and this is usually only the case for a brand/IP owner vendor or for a brand/IP owner itself. As a rule of thumb, if you wonder if you have these rights, you don’t. It is usually very clearly set forth in a contract. The burden and risk of confirming these rights is on each user individually if they move away from the Editorial Use restrictions. For everyone else, these Editorial restrictions include not using that material in the following ways: - Products may not be used on any item/product for re-sale, such as a video game or t-shirt. - Products may not be used as part of billboard, trade show or exhibit display. - Products may not be used in any defamatory, libelous or otherwise unlawful manner whether directly or in context or juxtaposition with specific subject matter. - The material may not be incorporated into a logo, trademark or service mark. For example, you can’t use Editorial content to create a logo design. - The material may not be used for any commercial, non-news related purpose. "
BkkNeon wrote
Teckna this is exactly what I was thinking too, how is it allowed to model a, for example, BMW car and then sell this model and profit out of it.  To sell any trademarked models I'm pretty sure need to have licenses for it.   For example, If you have an official 3d model from that Bmw car provided from BMW official website or whatever, you then could only charge money for the work you put into the animation and you have to tell your client that it's his responsibility to clear out the usage of this model with BMW itself. But making money of trademarked models as far as I was aware is NOT legal.
Posted 7 months ago

- The editorial license cannot be considered a license because only the copyright holder can grant a license. Licenses may be exclusive or non-exclusive, but the editorial license is not mentioned in the law (Article 2, point 32) of the Law on Copyright and Related Rights of the Republic of Lithuania)

- The editorial license cannot be considered a permitted restriction either, because the restrictions allowed to the author rights, can never be for commercial purposes, and the sale clearly is, since there is an economic gain (paragraph 28 of article 2 of the same law) and unreasonably damages the legitimate interests of the author or copyright holder (Article 19). The permitted restrictions are listed in articles 20 and following (and the sale is not one of them). The author (unless he has transmitted his rights), is the only one who can distribute the original or copies of the work through the sale, (section 5 of article 15)

- any copy (exact or modified), made without the authorization of the copyright holder, not contemplated in the permitted restrictions, is an illegal copy (section 36 of article 2)

Selling models of which you do not have rights, with a free license, thus trying to increase sales, is even worse, because it is the situation that shows the least respect for copyrights and also wastes time for buyers who want to use models for commercial projects (which is what the author of this thread complains about). Trying to avoid the legal responsibility that the seller has, trying to hold the buyer responsible is even more mean if possible.

Regarding the brands:

-A brand may not be registered but it is still protected by law, if it is widely recognized (Article 4 of the Trademark Law of the Republic of Lithuania)

- Like the owner of a registered trademark, the owner of a well-known brand will also have the right to prohibit any other person from using it in industrial or commercial activities, without their consent, that could be considered as reproduction, imitation or translation of a trademark. known. (section 7 of article 14)

These Lithuanian laws (and their namesakes from other countries) do not only affect the citizens of these countries, under international cooperation agreements (ratified and binding)

3DCargo wrote
It looks like we agree on the term editorial. Glad that is solved. Regarding use of editorial items in commercial sale, you and I have both agree that its not legal. Just so others are aware, Lithuanian copyright law differs to other countries. All the best.
Posted 7 months ago

This is the problem I encounter here.
I do motion graphics, I need to make sure that the products that I buy are Royalty-free, without finding out weeks later that the actual model has just been categorized as royalty-free, but in reality its a brand/trademark/copy.

If I finished my work for the client, I want to be sure that they won't get in trouble as I delivered them the work and making sure the models were all legal to use for commercial use.

So as for what it is right now, it feels like buying products is like Russian roulette.

First, you think great model, check, royalty-free, check, you check the profile of the seller, lots of sales, check, seems legit check, you then start to work on your project all happy but then after a couple of weeks you just check back the same user and you find out he sells Avatar characters also... as royalty-free... and all those trees and flowers and basically all his models.

Then you have to question yourself, oke are those models that I bought really royalty-free? Did I just waste all my time using materials that are copyrighted and did I just sold and promised my clients that they are cleared and cant be used commercially if they want?

 At the moment I'm literally stuck, it seems that I have to model everything myself which I don't even know how to and it's gonna take months.

How or where can I find 100% legit royalty-free products that can be used commercially, without spending time doing research on their legitness, as excluding editorial still gives me trademarked products as a result.

Please what is the solution for this..

Posted 7 months ago

I can assure you that mine are 100% original, from the design of the model to the textures, and are optimized for animation. But I would not put my hand in the fire for anyone else. Unfortunately there is a lot of fraud: copyrighted models and textures, stolen models, some slightly modified and others blatantly identical to the original, pirated software and student licenses ... the list of infractions is long and the list of violators much more. Only in this way can so many models be published in such a short time and so cheap. And worst of all, it is widespread, occurs in all markets and nobody cares, it is "normal", it is consented. I have been analyzing the problem for years and I can assure you that it has not improved at all, it is getting worse. The only way to be sure may be to do it yourself.

Posted 7 months ago

I think you probably emphasize to much on importance of royalty free license?
Editorial Licenses can in fact have commercial uses, but;

Just remember that 3D models consist of two parts.
There is the 3D model and separately but enclosed with it the design it is depicting.
The 3D model is considered a work of art created by a craftsman (3D artist) and has copyright on itself apart form what it is depicting. The depiction/design is also a copyrighted work on itself. It can be a design created and owned by the 3D modeler or it can be a design from a third party.

Editorial License means a license to use the 3D model (the owner of it grants you rights as outlined in the license, including commercial uses). However, the design it is depicting or parts of it are owned buy someone ells, thus the customer may or may not need additional permissions from that owner to use the depiction/designs the way he is intending (there may or may not be additional restrictions there, depending on his use case).

Lets imagine some cases to illustrate some possible allowed uses and possible problematic uses.

Imagine you need to create a video clip for a client. The client is a seller of Mercedes cars and wants some eye catching graphics to show on displays in his car shop, he wants supper silk animated imagery of the lineup he is selling. In this case you have no problem getting licenses of 3D models depicting the Mercedes cars and use those models to create the visuals.

Now imagine you want to use the nice design and prestige of a Mercedes car to ad value to a product, maybe some sort of game or interactive media. You can get a license for the 3D model but you cannot use the design it is depicting to create that type of product (unless you get additional permissions).

Strongly simplified you can reduce it to some short rules that go as follows,

If those 3D models are used to help make that brand popular, then its usually ok.
This includes, educational, promotional or news (editorial uses as we call them).

If the design is used to profit from it and maybe damage the brand, then that's not ok.
This includes profiting form the brand directly or misrepresent it (profiting from a 3D model does not equal profiting from a design or depictions from a brand).

Bottom line, you can generate motion graphics from editorial licensed models and provide those with editorial license. If you make the motion graphic for a customer then he needs to be aware for its use case (must fit in editorial context), can be outlined in the contract.

Anyways, if in doubts regarding some uses and you want waterproof legal rights for your specific use case then just contact those who own the rights and ask for written permissions.

Posted 7 months ago

NO, the restrictions on copyright provided by law do not allow commercial purposes. I suggest that you read the law and you will check it. A graphic representation of a model (photography, render, painting ...) that is an artistic interpretation is not the same as selling a model itself (which is a scale copy of the object). Some companies allow it in exchange for the advertising they get for their products, but that does not mean that they cannot change their policy at any time and prohibit it, because the law gives them that right. In fact, recently all lamborghini models were removed from TS at the request of the brand owner. If the editorial license had any validity, the models covered by it could not be eliminated. Ford also has an agreement with TS, in which case it is lawful because the rights holder has given his authorization (nothing to do with what happens here).

Exceptions for educational or informational purposes and the like do not allow the complete work to be reproduced, only a small extract, that which is strictly necessary to fulfill its purpose.

The big brands take great care of their corporate image, which translates into a style guide. They supervise even the smallest detail, from the typography to the size of the empty space that should be around your logo. Following his example, the official dealer would order the 3D model, but the owner of the brand would also be the owner of that model and of course would not let the modeller sell it on his own (since it is not his property).

Of course, authorization can be obtained from the owner of the rights, but in exchange for compensation, usually economic, which may also be required by the owner of the rights, in some of the restrictions provided by law.

Posted 7 months ago

@Techna, in copyright law there is this loophole called “fair use doctrine”. As far as I can tell “Editorial license” is exploiting this loophole to allow copyrighted designs to be reproduced and sold.

If I’m correct you can in fact legally draw a Mercedes car in 3D software and sell the 3D data (your work) if you do not license out the design it is depicting. In turn you can buy/use the 3D data to produce some video and sell that (if provided under editorial license).

Admittedly this is an aberration as some point out but as far as I can tell selling under editorial license in not the same as licensing out the designs in those works. Basically you sell your work but at same time you say to the one buying the work he/she probably needs additional license to use the depictions/the work of someone ells enclosed in it (in other ways then educational, news, etc.)

Anyways, original copyright holder always has last say, lawmakers insist on that but at same time made this loophole to make things a little bit less black and white I guess and it can be exploited in many ways if you have enough imagination.

Here is what U.S. Copyright Office say about it
And something about it on Wikipedia

Posted 7 months ago

I agree that American law is more ambiguous than others, but here the applicable law is Lithuanian (*), which is much clearer and does not admit commercial purposes. In any case, no world law will harm the interests (economic or of any kind) of the legitimate owner of the rights, also respecting the rights of those who acquire a legitimate work or copy (sold by an authorized seller). For example, copies of 3ds max could not be sold by anyone other than Autodesk without your permission, even if they were for educational or personal use only, nor could they be distributed for free.

Still, in the fair use of which you speak, 4 factors are analyzed:

- The purpose. The purpose of the seller of the copyrighted model of a third party, is the sale (make a profit) and the owner of the rights, logically also want to get their share. I do not think that in this factor the sale can be considered as a fair use.

- The nature of the work. The modeller could have modeled a generic object (an unbranded car), but relies on the brand to increase the possibility of selling his model and therefore his profit, given the prestige of the brand. Nor do I think this can be considered fair use.

- The quantity used of the copyrighted object, which in most cases is 100%, does not make it easier to consider it as fair use either.

- The effect of use on the potential market. In most models, it clearly harms the copyright owner. Continuing with the example of the Mercedes, any part of the vehicle (for example the logo) could be printed and that would be clearly detrimental to the owner of the brand, who sells original parts and accessories at higher prices than it would cost to print it in 3D. The same happens with other types of models such as jewelry counterfeits, collectible figures ... It does not seem that this point helps to consider the sale of these models as fair use.

If the sale cannot be considered as fair use, it does not matter if the purchase could be considered as fair use or not, because it should not be carried out, since the sale would be a sale without the authorization of the rights owner and not contemplated in the exceptions, that invalidates everything derived from it.

I think copyright and intellectual property laws are not written with the specifics of 3D models and printing in mind and need to be adapted.

(*) https://e-seimas.lrs.lt/portal/legalAct/lt/TAD/TAIS.81676/cujbRnBpNc

Posted 7 months ago

I can agree with you but your pointing out the other end of the contradiction, my point is that they are not using a brand/designs for commercial purposes, they are using the right to reproduce something for fare use cases (provide it for news education, etc.).

They basically ask money for the work they did, not for a license to use the design. You indeed can argue those people are selling the design for its prestige and infringe on copyright, etc. The other person will say no I’m selling my 3D model for educational purposes and ask noting for the design it depicts, I fully respect international copyright law and are aware the design is protected. I would not dare infringe the rights of the original owner, I am aware the design is his only.

Also the harm you are pointing out is responsibility of the person using the data, editorial license points out the material can only be used in cortex of education, etc.

Anyway, copyright law is a work in progress and indeed not up for digital age.

Posted 7 months ago

The same argument could be used by someone who publishes a disc playing a musical piece without the author's permission, or who distributes a computer program without authorization, as part of the content of a study agenda. Rights holders may disagree and file a lawsuit. The risk is high and the possible serious consequences (removal of the material in dispute, economic losses, criminal actions ...). It is a delicate subject susceptible of interpretations and the last word could have a judge. And given the economic benefit generated by those acts, it is probable that compensation will be ordered for the author (which, added to the expenses generated by the litigation, such as attorney's fees and other expenses), can be a serious blow to the defendant. In addition, as already indicated, most of the time the models are not even sold with an editorial license and there are cases, such as those of jewelry counterfeits, in which the damage is serious and nobody would believe that it is a fair use, nor educational or anything like that. Any sensible person will avoid these situations.

On the other hand, creating your own models, not copied from anything existing, makes them unique and therefore more valuable. It also allows you to easily distinguish if someone has copied your model.

Posted 7 months ago

I'm not following the debate, but i want to ask Tecna, what is your point here? What are you trying to proove? Are you saying that editorial license is wrong, or that is being misused, or what? And please try to stay short and clear with your answer, no need for excerpts of law - nobody will be reading this.

Posted 7 months ago

Editorial license is an aberration. It is on the cutting edge of legality and can cause legal problems for the seller. Each case is different, but it is better to avoid it.

But avoiding it, with models that involve brands, or third-party copyrights is even worse, because in addition to being able to cause problems for the seller and the buyer, it makes the buyer waste time.

Since we can model anything, let's be original. Only then can you be sure not to infringe any rights.

LemonadeCG wrote
Let's not tell each other what to model and what not. If there is demand there is supply. I think that calling editorial license an abberation is plain stupid. If you don't want to risk and produce models that include branding, that's perfectly fine, just don't tell that everyone should do the same.
iterateCGI wrote
I agree the editorial license can be used wrong but that does not make the editorial license a bad thing. Its like telling a hammer is bad because you can kill with it if you struck it on someones head, therefore we should ban or avoid all hammers. Just use the thing properly and there is no problem.
Posted 7 months ago

The problem is that Royalty-free and trademarked models are mixed together, they should be separated.  I need a solution...

If you're an animator or CGI artist, you want to make sure (if you sell or use them commercially) that the models are actually royalty-free, so when you finished your animations, you then 100% know that none of the models being used are trademarked or branded, therefore, a 100% legally compiled composition without copyright infringement...

Now when you have a product, you can now, officially sell your products without you or your clients running into copyright problems.
The reason why I started this thread is that when I search for models, I don't want to spend hours of research if any of the models is a copy, plagiarism, or anything else that makes it not available for commercial use and could lead to problems.

BkkNeon wrote
Take this, for example, I'm looking to make an animation to sell non-exclusive, so I look for cars https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/car/sport/lamborghini-aventador-svj-2020     This one appears royalty-free (impossible) https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/car/sport/generic-10-car-pack-cd15dcd5-64c2-438f-8cb5-333e35065cce    This one also (royalty-free) is most likely a real royalty-free product that won't get you in trouble. If I look for a robot model https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/science/laboratory/robot-sentinel-game-ready-player-or-ai    This one most likely is a real original product royalty-free (not 100% sure). The reason why I can't be 100% sure, well check the link below But then in the same section robots, we find IRON MAN  royalty-free https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/character/sci-fi/iron-man-rigged-d5d22302-1a51-4355-b229-6fe6cc59921d
LemonadeCG wrote
Wait a minute. So you're saying you buy some royalty free model, animate it and re-sell that model as your own? How that could be legal?
Posted 7 months ago

I’m afraid a solution for that is expensive, would need more workforce to review over a million models. The artists/publishers have freedom to select those license types and with freedom comes that sort of messiness/room for error. Even if the models get reviewed and license would be set correctly some artist afterwards set it back to the wrong one, or they indeed had special clearance and reviewer did not know about it, etc. Anyways, you can always go to competing platforms that probably are better at this but just more expensive, you wont find artists like me on it who just don't want to pay for a workforce of reviewers.

Maybe you just have to accept that if you produce something you need to do the research (if you like to use affordable models in it). Also keep in mind that this platform has build in communication. You can get in contact with the artist/publisher and can ask if they indeed have special clearance for selling royalty free license on the item they are providing (if in doubts).

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